The Impact of What We Eat: From Science & Technology to Eating Local
March 8, 2016
As part of our 2016 public lecture series, we explored the environmental and social impacts of food with a focus on science and technology. A major theme of this panel was how we can initiate change through consciously making food choices. For this discussion our panelists included Chef Daniel Patterson, Dr. Paul B. Thompson, and Dr. Kent Kirshenbaum. Chef Daniel Patterson shared how his restaurant LocoL strives to enhance and empower local communities. Dr. Paul B Thompson of Michigan State University discussed the ethical and philosophical implication of agricultural practices and food infrastructure on food producers. Dr. Kent Kirshenbaum of NYU Chemistry explored the latest scientific advances in food technology.
Check out the highlights or watch the full lecture below
Chef Daniel Patterson on how Locol acts as both a business and a charity
Chef Patterson discusses how his restaurant is “a profitable business that’s also compassionate” by bringing healthy and delicious food to an underserved community, while also encouraging economic development in the area.
Dr. Paul Thompson on balancing local and regional food production
Dr. Thompson explains that foods like fruits and vegetables can produced locally, while basic grains are best produced regionally in places best suited for their growth.
Dr. Kent Kirshenbaum on scientific advances in food that reduce our environmental impact
Dr. Kirshenbaum talks about plant-based meat substitutes as well as isolating components from environmentally sensitive ingredients to create more sustainable foods.
Dr. Paul Thompson talks about how farming practices are important for food safety
Dr. Thompson discusses the natural dangers of foods and shares how potato farmers use careful breeding to reduce the naturally occurring toxicity of the potato plant.
Dr. Kent Kirshenbaum explains how traditional cooking practices don’t ensure healthy food
Dr. Kirshenbaum explains how all food technology needs to be evaluated for safety and how even traditional practices like cooking over an open flame can cause a risk to health.
Chef Daniel Patterson explores deliciousness and the need for collaboration
Chef Patterson talks about how subjective taste and deliciousness can be and the importance collaboration between scientists and chefs for new food technology. Here, Chef Patterson recalls his experiences with new plant-based meats.
See the Entire Lecture Here